2020 – The Year of Education Transformation

2020 – The Year of Education Transformation
Eric O’Brien Vice President, Collaboration and Education Merchant Advisory Group
Feb 2, 2021

I can’t believe 2021 is already upon us. It seems like the 2020 Annual Conference was just yesterday, and here we are getting ready to dive right back in with the 2021 Mid-Year Conference. While some of 2020 seemed to be never ending, other parts flew by! At the Annual Conference and Tech Forum, we hosted an Education Session on Tokenization led by a panel of five industry experts that covered the gamut on options merchants could employ when building a tokenization strategy. Having a combination of merchants, acquirers, and networks speaking about their experiences and offerings with a no-sales/education-focused approach really helped get the full picture of the different available solutions out there.

What struck me the most listening to the experts was just how much tokenization can impact so many internal merchant processes, such as loyalty identification or something even more costly – debit routing capability. It really is vital for merchants to consider all options and to bring in several cross-functional partners internally to help determine the best approach for implementation or optimization of a tokenization strategy.

If you happened to miss the session, it’s still available on-demand on the MAG Learning Center! (Note: login is required and is available to merchant members only)

Speaking of on-demand and the MAG Learning Center, have you checked it out yet?! It provides a vast catalog of learning content compiled in a new user-friendly interface. The MAG Learning Center is intimately connected with the MAG’s redesigned website and allows you to track your progress through all educational content including webinars, best practice guides, the latest Card Brand releases, readiness materials and more!

2020 was a transformative year for the MAG. Not only did we launch the redesigned website and the MAG Learning Center – platforms that will completely change how merchants access and consume MAG content – but we were also hard at work building the introductory installment of the Merchant Payments Professional eLearning series (which is now available for merchant members!). This is a breakthrough educational tool for professionals that are both new to the payments industry and veterans that are looking for a refresher on the fundamentals of merchant payments acceptance. We have heard far and wide that education has been one of the biggest barriers to merchants’ advancement in the payments industry, and this course was designed from the ground up with that key challenge in mind: to address the lack of a formal payments education. In this first installment, Merchant Payments 101, learners will explore:

  • The History of Value – a brief introduction to the ecosystem and how we arrived where we are today
  • An Overview of the Payments Ecosystem – An exploration of the systems and participants in the payments ecosystem
  • The Customer Journey The customer payment journey in both Brick & Mortar and eCommerce as well as how each transaction impacts both the customer and merchant experience
  • The Cost of Payments A deep dive into the costs associated with merchants’ payments acceptance
  • The Value of Analysis – The key performance metrics to demonstrate the cost of doing business and maximize the return for the merchant

Merchant Payments 101 is now available to MAG Merchant Members at no cost as an additional benefit to your 2021 MAG Membership. It will be available to non-MAG Members later in the first quarter of 2021. We cannot wait to hear what you think and how it is helping you in your payments career!

Stick around, because we are just getting started! 

The Merchant Advisory Group

Driving positive change and innovation in the payments industry that serves the merchants interest through collaboration, education, and advocacy.